For the last several weeks radio talk show host Michele McPhee from 96.9 FM talk has made it her personal mission to force Willie Lantigua to resign from his State Rep. seat while also serving as the city’s mayor. McPhee has also ramped up her efforts to stop House Bill 4421, a $35 Million bailout with state taxpayers money. “Not one more penny for the city of Lawrence without a receiver and a fiscal oversight board,” McPhee told her listening audience.
“This is outrageous,” she continued. “As a Rep., Slick Willie Lantigua sits on the House Ways and Means Committee which means he gets to vote on a bill that will give Lawrence $35 Million and then, this same guy will get to spend that money as the mayor of Lawrence. This has to stop.”
Lowell State Rep. Tom Golden (D), appeared on the Paying Attention! Radio Program on 980AM, WCAP and told radio host Tom Duggan that he opposes HB 4421 unless there is someone appointed by the state to oversee the way those funds are used. Shrewsbury State Rep. Karyn Polito (R), called into the show and expressed her outrage that cities and towns across the state are facing monumental cuts in their budgets, laying off teachers, police and firefighters and closing libraries while Lawrence continues to get millions of dollars that they’ve proven they can’t manage. Mayor Lantigua says that Lawrence currently has a $24.5MIL budget deficit with no end in sight.
Candidate for Governor Charlie Baker appeared on Michele McPhee’s program and said he strongly opposes Democrat Governor Deval Patrick’s bill to give Lawrence another $35 Million with no oversight.
“… we know the right way out of this is the same approach we took with Chelsea and the same approach we took with Springfield. If a community ends up on the edge of bankruptcy, then the right answer here is; receivership, state take-over, [and] a fiscal control board. Then we make absolutely sure that we get the spending side of the House under control before the State puts one more dime of everybody else’s money into solving it’s [Lawrence’s] problems.”
Andover State Representative Barry Finegold, Andover State Rep. Sue Tucker and North Andover State Rep., Dave Torissi all support a $35 MIL bailout with no fiscal controls and no oversight.
Andover republican Jamison Tomasek, who is running against Tucker in the fall says he believes it would be “irresponsible” to spend state taxpayers dollars on a bailout for Lawrence after city officials have mismanaged the billions of dollars they have already received.